The rosters for the 2024 NBA All-Star Game are officially set and with the game returning to its traditional East vs. West format, there are more likely to be snubs as the talent dispersion isn’t even across conferences. While none of the current All-Star selections aren’t deserving of their position, here’s a look at some players who were snubbed from this year’s event in Indianapolis.
NBA All-Star Game snubs
Domantas Sabonis and De’Aaron Fox, Sacramento Kings
It’s hard to leave Sabonis out and put Karl-Anthony Towns in when you look at the numbers, but Towns has been much better for Minnesota. The Kings big man has been on a tear of late as he attempted to build his All-Star case, and Sacramento remains a playoff contender after a surprising 2022-23 season. The Timberwolves have the best record in the West and it makes sense for Towns to get in but Sabonis deserves some recognition. Kings guard De’Aaron Fox is also a snub here, especially since he’s putting up some truly eye-popping numbers across the board.
Kyrie Irving, Dallas Mavericks
Because this is a coach selection, I can see why Irving has been left off. The media and fans would’ve likely pushed the Dallas guard in as he’s been an excellent running mate for Luka Doncic, but the coaches felt other players were more deserving. We’ll see if Irving, who has missed the last five games dealing with a thumb injury, can come back and give the Mavericks a boost in the second half of the season.
Jimmy Butler, Miami Heat
I know, I know. Butler hasn’t been at his best this season and he has been injured, but this is where the coach vote should’ve really pushed him in. The Heat forward is still putting up 21-5-4 and went for 31 to snap Miami’s losing streak. We know what Butler is capable of and the coaches know it too, so him being excluded is a bit fo a surprise even though he’s had a down year. He could get in if Julius Randle remains out with a dislocated shoulder and Joel Embiid’s meniscus is too damaged for the 76ers big man to play.
Trae Young, Atlanta Hawks
Update: Young has been added to the East All-Star Game roster as an injury replacement. Scottie Barnes from the Raptors has also been added, as the East needed to replace both Joel Embiid and Julius Randle.
It’s obvious the records mattered in the East, since Young’s 27-11 stat line is rivaled by few in the league. The Hawks point guard has tried to steady the ship and despite some porous defense across the board, Atlanta is still in the play-in mix. It’s easy to say Young would be in if the Hawks were closer to .500, which makes it easy to blame their problems on the point guard too. He could get in if Julius Randle remains out with a dislocated shoulder and Joel Embiid’s meniscus is too damaged for the 76ers big man to play.
Lauri Markkanen, Utah Jazz
Markkanen was considered a token All-Star a year ago with the game being in Utah, but he’s become a legit threat this season. Him being excluded along with Sabonis shows you how deep the West is when it comes to talent, and how far Markkanen has to go to be considered among of the game’s best. The Jazz are in a weird spot when it comes to a timeline, but Markkanen’s play and team-friendly contract make him a great player to build something around. The contract isn’t really considered for this selection but he deserves some recognition.
Alperen Sengun, Houston Rockets
It’s going to be hard to convince anyone to vote for frontcourt players on teams with losing records, especially when you have guys like Towns and Jokic operating in the conference. However, Sengun has been turning in a brilliant season for Houston. He’s averaging 21-9-5 for a Rockets team that has remained pesky, and might be their best player. Like Markkanen, he’s one of those players who is great to build around and deserves some recognition even if calling him a snub is a bit unfair to the guys who did make it.